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Left In Lowell » MA politics

Left In Lowell

Member of the reality-based community of progressive (not anonymous) Massachusetts blogs

2013 Candidate Questionnaire Responses!

August 29, 2013

Tim Murray on Michael McLaughlin’s Civil Settlement

by at 1:57 pm.

From Facebook -

Regarding today’s agreement with the Attorney General’s Office:
I am glad that this civil settlement brings to a close a process that I initiated in January of 2012 when I asked for an investigation by the Office of Campaign and Political Finance based upon reports that Michael McLaughlin was improperly soliciting funds for my committee.

I asked for the investigation because I have always sought to play by the rules and run my political committee within the letter and the spirit of the law. This review has been comprehensive and we have fully cooperated with the authorities every step of the way.

As I have said from the start, I never asked Michael McLaughlin to solicit funds for my committee, because I know that would have been wrong. The finding that Michael McLaughin violated the law by asking people to donate to my committee is not shocking today given what we now know about his character and his criminal actions. As a result of his criminal activity, many people have been hurt, most importantly many good people in Chelsea who simply sought dignified and affordable housing for themselves and their families. If I knew in 2006 what I know today about Mr. McLaughlin, I would have never had any association with him at all.

Nevertheless, Mr. McLaughlin’s behavior does not change the fact that I am ultimately responsible for administrative oversights made by my committee. While neither I nor any member of my committee was aware that Mr. McLaughlin was making such solicitations, we should have been more vigilant in monitoring the situation.

This investigation also found inappropriate fundraising activity by a state highway department employee. Again, I should have been more vigilant.

I have certainly learned from these mistakes and I hope that other elected officials, candidates for office and their political committees can as well.

This civil settlement and purging of the funds is a welcomed conclusion and I look forward to continuing to work hard in my role as President of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce, to help businesses and institutions grow, create jobs and improve the quality of life for people in Central Massachusetts and the Commonwealth at large.

August 20, 2013

A Big Decision for a Little Big Shot

by at 5:54 pm.

It is confirmed by several sources, John MacDonald has formed his own company. Then, there is this:

(I deleted out his address and added the red arrow to the screen grab)

I’m at a loss. What to think?!

Is JMac’s sugar daddy, Sal Lupoli gonna run for Governor? LG? Something? Or, is JMac looking to cash campaign checks from a Lupoli ally?

Maybe, he wants to shill for slots in Tewksbury?

Make sure you watch City Life, tomorrow, at 6 am: Here or on the boob tube. Or, wait until the amateur marketeer gets the Blog of Record on message, then read it in dead tree form. Lastly, you can listen to Sam Poulten’s pride and joy, The JMac & The Bear Show. I think this hour long infomercial for “shady Lowell” runs Fridays at 10am.

Heads up, folks!

August 8, 2013

Senator Markey In Lowell

by at 4:46 pm.

Mayor’s aide, Jennifer Myers provides a wonderful account of today’s visit from MA’s junior senator:

Baacke also stressed the importance of federal historic rehabilitation tax credits to a post-industrial city like Lowell. In 2000, the city had 3 million square feet of vacant mill space. Today it is nearly full. That would not have been possible without the tax credits.

“Three million square feet is three John Hancock Towers, in Lowell,” said Markey. “That is an amazing story; I will absolutely protect with my vote and my voice those tax credits.”

Middlesex North Register of Deeds Richard Howe told Markey about the Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership’s First Time Homeowner’s program. During the foreclosure crisis, homeowners who completed the program were virtually untouched, as their neighbors lost their homes to foreclosure; a wise use of federal funding.

Markey and city officials took a ride out to the city’s Back Central neighborhood, meeting on Chambers Street, to look at a project Mayor Murphy is championing — constructing a path for walking and biking along Hale’s Brook that can tie-in to Chelmsford’s Bruce Freeman Rail Trail.

Read more and check out the other photos at the Mayor’s Office Blog: Room 50.

July 13, 2013

Democratic Convention Afterthoughts

by at 10:55 pm.

I just woke up from a nap.

Convention can be overwhelming. The crush of suits and dresses, all trying to get an angle at some VIP. The mid-level elected officials, huddling together on the side lines, posing with feigned indifference, tangential to the din. The dealmakers bending ears, drinks in hand. The volunteers, boosting their fave, smiling to infect. Convention swirls in the room. It streams on the patio. It queues on the floor with credentials and schwag.

Convention lifts you. Convention drags you out. You chat care free with buds. You grin, annoyed as someone you barely know sucks your time away. You turn to a face, grimacing, owned by one or few of those that bare ill will. Friends. Acquaintances. Strangers, Enemies. Mixed together, schmoozing, drinking, nibbling. Eyes gazed intently. Eyes darting in the hunt. Ears pricked. Mouths fully engaged in all manners. Convention can be overwhelming. (more…)

July 2, 2013

Two Senate Specials - Very Different Results

by at 10:16 pm.

It’s late, so I’ll be brief.

With a January 2010 turnout of 20,000+, on the wave of anti-health care reform & tea party madness, Scott Brown shocked the world and won Lowell by 1,002 votes.

It looked like this:

The graph shows the % of voters for Coakley, decreasing Left to Right. This shows where the candidates’ support lies.

But, with a June 2013 turnout of half that, things went the other way.

The graph shows the % of voters for Markey, decreasing Left to Right. This shows where the candidates’ support lies.

I like this graph best. If you subtract Gomez % from Brown %, you see where the GOP brand is softening in Lowell. Ward 1 is just filled with a bunch of “Hooray for me! Democrats.” Pfft.

Some thought jots:
- Looks like Stephen Lynch’s efforts, during the primary, and Ed Markey’s efforts in the general; to call up the SEA community worked well.
- The Precincts that drive the municipal elections lean Republican. Even though, they are mostly registered Dems and Unenrolleds. *blech*
- The “Mills to Martinis” profiteering is completely screwing up ‘Lowell’ politics. I <3 Ward 2!

June 28, 2013

Let’s Preempt a Repeat, Please

by at 7:49 am.

All the other bloggers are chiming in on the Coakley gubernatorial “trial balloon” reported in the Globe, so I might has well have a say. The internets are exploding with a collective “NOOOOOOOOO!” and we all know why.

Susan of Below Boston has a particularly pointed take:

If Martha Coakley is ‘considering running’ for MA Governor because some of her former campaign staff are ‘giddy’ because they just came off working in the Ed Markey campaign which was ‘successful’, and she’s getting phone calls from some of them saying :’We know how to run a successful campaign now Martha!, Let’s try again, come on! It will be better this time, you’ll see’.

She better not seriously pick up these calls from these jokers – some of the activists on the South Shore had to ‘endure’ remnants of her campaign staff, who, for some totally unknown reason, but most possibly in my opinion it was because this state is in election overload and the truly BEST campaign operatives decided to take a ‘break’ after November of ’12 and the Coakley remnants found themselves with the opportunity to do something that most people who had previously failed so spectacularly seldom get a chance to do: get a second chance to prove themselves.

A few proved themselves alright – proved again why Martha Coakley lost, and in a few short weeks managed to alienate an entire region South of Boston for Ed Markey.


Dick Howe also has a post up as well, with more general analysis, where he’s a little more supportive. I’m wondering how he would react to Susan’s take, because not only did Coakley lose to Brown spectacularly, but her campaign was horrendous, and do we have any evidence she’d change any of the horses midstream??

Here’s my advice, Martha: if you want to stay “popular,” stay where you are. You’re a prosecutor, Jim, not a politician. Prosecutors do not, contrary to popular CW (common wisdom), make the jump successfully to higher offices like Governor or Senator. Reilly failed, Harshbarger failed, and you will fail (again), but you might take the Democratic party down with you when you do (like Harshbarger did). STAY HOME. Run for reelection as AG. DO NOT by any stretch of the imagination equate the excitement of your gawd-awful former campaign staff with any sort of activist excitement, cuz, we been there, we done that, and I know a SLEW of activists who would happily work against your campaign should you jump in.

Me, included.

PS/Update/Addendum: And as for the Grossman aspect, which Dick talks about in his post…well, let’s just say that he looks kinda shady going after endorsements from Panagiotakos and Murphy around here. Whatever candidate they think is great is someone I probably will not. Or, to put it another way…I want to run. Screaming.

May 31, 2013

Let’s Ask Teddy Panos (Updated)

by at 11:34 am.

Hey, Teddy.

Your ass is in a knot over welfare fraud. (Yes. I do listen.) And, you are a proponent of the big government intrusion of mandating citizens present photo identification when they go to exercise control over government, via ballots. As social engineering is an incrementalist’s game, whether progressive or classic liberal, you should be happy as a clam to hear this:

From the Boston Dead Tree Rag:

It’s time to slap photos on EBT cards and crank up oversight of the state’s “broken” welfare system before more dead people can collect benefits, an incensed House Speaker Robert DeLeo told the Herald yesterday.

“Why do we have to let the wound fester? We have to stop this fraud, and we have to stop it now,” DeLeo said, adding he was “appalled” by a state audit released Tuesday that showed $2.4 million paid to more than 1,100 dead people and $27 million to live recipients collecting EBT benefits out of state, including in Alaska and Hawaii.

DeLeo said House proposals to put photos on EBT cards, create a Bureau of Program Integrity and allow the Inspector General to monitor the embattled agency “are needed now more than ever,” and promises by the Patrick administration that they are addressing the problems aren’t enough.


For sure, if EBT cards are printed with a photo id of the benefit holder, an idea I fully support; then this will be a valid id. Thus, should the photo id intrusion into our ballot system of checks and balances move forward, those of us guarding against voter suppression will be partially relieved.

I love ‘checks and balances.’ It’s the wisest creation of The Founders.

Update: David Bernstein, of Boston Magazine, did a nice job sorting through the spin factor around the Auditor’s report. Such revelations will not help Teddy regain his composure. Maybe, it will help you, as it did me. Please proceed below the fold for an outtake.

May 29, 2013

Open Thread: Special Election Edition

by at 6:10 am.

From the local Markey campaign office:

Also, on the bill: Lowell’s faves - State Senator Donoghue and former State Senator Panagiotakos. I’d expect other electeds and activists to be there.

From the City of Lowell:

Wednesday, June 5, 8pm: Deadline to register to vote for Special Election. Election office is open until 8pm. Registration forms postmarked by this day are also accepted.

Wednesday, June 5: Approximate date for Special Election absentee ballot availability. Confirm availability with election office if you plan to vote over the counter.

Saturday, June 22: 10am – 3pm Election Office open for over the counter absentee voting

Monday, June 24: 12:00 noon deadline to apply for absentee ballot. If you are applying receive ballot via postal mail, it is highly advisable to apply before this time.

Tuesday, June 25: Special General Election. Polls are open 7am – 8pm.
All absentee ballots must be received in the Election Office by 8pm to be counted.

Contact the Election Office if you need to verify your voter registration status: 978-674-1200

You may vote absentee for any, and only any, of the following reasons: 1) Absence from the City during polling hours, 2) Disability; or 3) Religious beliefs.

April 24, 2013

Remember The Senate Special Election?

by at 4:26 pm.

The Primary is one week from yesterday.

 photo MarkeyGOTVEvent_zpsb2d583de.jpg

A note from Ariela: This is the same night as the fund raiser for the bombing victims being held at the UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center. It is understood that at 6pm, many of the attendees will be walking over to the ICC for that event, as well. I hope to see you all soon.

April 21, 2013

Charity Concert for Boston

by at 10:37 pm.

I’d like to invite you all to a special event. Details and links below the fold.


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